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Ampeg SVT 3 Pro used?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by crazyphil, Aug 29, 2002.

  1. I have the chance to get this amp for $750 CDN and I'm wonering if I should. It's used (3-4 years old) and I know it has tube pre amps. I don't know much about tube amps (or amp in general) but is this a good amp? How often would I have to replace the tubes and how would I know when to replace them?
  2. I used an SVT3 Pro for years and I liked it. It is a good piece of gear IMO. Preamp tubes have a very, very long life; don't let that scare you away.
  3. CaptainWally

    CaptainWally Supporting Member

    Oct 21, 2000
    Sandy Eggo, CA
    I'm not in touch with the Canadian market, but that price sounds a little high for an svt3 here in the U.S. (even accounting for the exchange rate).

    I owned an SVT3 pro and overall, I would not recommend it. I think the Ampeg B2 is cheaper, lighter, louder. I also prefer the tone, especially with a 4 ohm load, and it can be had for quite a bit less money (~$550 new $USD).

    If you have a chance, go to the guitar store and check them out side by side.
  4. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    I agree, I had the SVT-IIIPRO & I like it. But then I just A/B the B2R & SVT-III I I liked the B2R better.
  5. cb56


    Jul 2, 2000
    Central Illinois
    So it's not just me.
    Traded my new SVT III pro in for the B4 :D
  6. Flight Time

    Flight Time

    Aug 29, 2002
    I traded my B2R in for a SVP-Pro and power amp. I think that the pre-amp section of the SVTIII is the same as the SVP-Pro. Most feel that the III is just underpowered. Maybe you should look for a used SVT-IV or a B4 (which is the same as SVT-IV but is entirely solid state). All in all, I've been very happy with Ampeg.
  7. jerry

    jerry Too old for a hiptrip Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999
    I have a SVT3 pro........and I'm one of the guys that thinks it's underpowered:D Nice preamp though;)
  8. Thanks for the replies. I was thinking it's a little overpriced for a used one as well. I'm looking at the b2r or the b5r new.
  9. CaptainWally

    CaptainWally Supporting Member

    Oct 21, 2000
    Sandy Eggo, CA
    I like the B5 too. Bass NW has a 'special sale' on a factory refurbished unit for $599 US. I'm not sure how that works out getting it to Canada.

    FWIW, I think Ampeg has great products, but the SVT3-pro isn't definitely not one of their best.
  10. cb56


    Jul 2, 2000
    Central Illinois
    My opinion on the SVT proIII is the opposite. Not saying I'm right or you're wrong just a differnece of opinion. I think the power amp is fine it's the pre amp i had a problem with> fuzzy distortion all the time. that's why i traded it for the B4r. I liked the distorted tone of the SVTIII just not all the time. I haven't heard a SVT IV yet up close . is the pre amp different? no tube drive? which is what i dis liked.
  11. submelodic


    Feb 7, 2002
    Seattle, WA
    I'm kind of amazed at how much used SVT-3 Pros are fetching. Accoring to Prepal, the average price for a used one is $533. I think that money would be much better spent elsewhere. I sold mine for $350 shipped and felt that was a fair price.
  12. I will say that I now use a B2 combo, the old 4 X 8" model, and I like the sound better than the SVT3PRO. I traded even up because I was tired of lugging a head and a 4 X 10" cab, not because I didn't like the sound of the SVT3.
  13. shakeyeraz


    Aug 25, 2002
    I have used the SVT III Pro for about 18 months and like it - both the preamp and power amp. The preamp + EQ + tone adjustments let's you get just about any sound, fat to thin, with almost infinite variability. The power amp pushes my 2 Eden cabinets just fine (total load = 4ohms) at the full power rating of the amp. The amp also runs very cool - doen't get hot which means the internal components are over rated for the power they're pushing and that ultimately means longer life + fewer problems.

    my 2-cents

    BTW - there are 2 versions that people have. Ampeg changed the design both physically and internally but didn't change the name. I've noticed that the 'older' models sell for about $200 less than the newer ones. For reference - mine is the newer model that you find in retail stores now.
  14. shakeyeraz


    Aug 25, 2002
    This is a newer model SVT III Pro
  15. I bought mine new about 1.5-2 years ago. Always been happy with it, and never had volume problems, until my guitar player got a 100 watt Marshall half stack. So I got a 8x10 and have plenty of volume. Always liked the tone, and have no complaints of the head. Lately I have been thinking about the pre/power setup, and might get the single space Aguilar, SVP pro, or IOD. Need to do a little more homework first though.

  16. Flight Time

    Flight Time

    Aug 29, 2002
    My point ....If the pre-amp is the same as the SVP-Pro (which I use), it's has great tone and can go from clean to overdriven. IMHO, it's a great pre-amp. However, some have complained about the lack of power.
  17. I have an older SVT-III. Don't know just what the difference in the preamps is between it and the new "Pro" model. However, mine is only rated at 350W/4-ohms, 200W/8-ohms, the same as the current B2R. However, I have the tube preamp.

    I've had mine for almost 4 years now. I bought it used. I've been very happy with it; tone, volume, reliability, etc. If it were to get stolen, fry itself, or whatever, I'd probably replace it with the new SVT-3Pro.

    There are a lot of people who like different things. My advice to you is try it out for yourself and make up your own mind on this. Only you can make the decision as whether or not you really like something.

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